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Economic Data

Welcome to the ‘Economic Data’ section of Insight DIY, which includes a summary of all of the key UK economic indicators that you may need to know within your business. Each of these key indicators are updated as and when they are released by their various sources and provide a really valuable addition to any monthly report or business overview.

BRC - KPMG Retail Sales Monitor

Retail Sales image
  • On a total basis, sales rose 1.4% in July, against a growth of 1.9% in July 2016. This month’s growth is in line with the 12-month average.
  • Over the three months to July, Food sales increased 2.3% on a like-for-like basis and 3.4% on a total basis. This is weaker growth against the 3-month average to June 2017 but stronger against the same three months to July 2016.
  • Over the three-months to July, Non-Food retail sales in the UK decreased by 0.7% on a like-for-like basis and by 0.4% on a total basis. This is below the 12-month total average growth of 0.4%.
  • Online sales of Non-Food products grew 8.3% in July, compared to 11.2% a year earlier. Over the three-months to July, Online sales of Non-Food products grew 7.8% while the 12-month average stands at 8.4%.
  • Over the three months to July 2017, In-store sales declined 2.6% on a Total basis and 3.0% on a like-for-like basis.

Release Date: 8th August 2017
Next Release Date: 6th September 2017.

Source: KPMG Monitor

GfK Consumer Confidence Barometer

Consumer Confidence Index

Monthly Index: -12
Previous Month's Index: -10
Monthly Index Previous Year: -12
Period: July 2017

Joe Staton, Head of Market Dynamics at GfK, says: “Consumer confidence across the UK has fallen to the level last seen in the immediate aftermath of the Brexit vote. The economic picture across the UK remains confusing and this mood is reflected in the Overall Index Score, which is down by five points. It’s the sharp drop in confidence about the UK’s general economy – both looking back one year and ahead one year – that is driving the fall. While there’s a small bounce in consumer views of personal finance looking ahead, that’s the only measure that’s up. 

All bets must now be on a further drift downwards in confidence. Yes, employment is booming, but wages have fallen in real terms since 2008 once inflation is taken into account. And while consumers have increased borrowing to carry on spending, the household savings ratio is now at a record low. If Brexit negotiations continue to deliver more questions than answers, it’s unlikely the Overall Index Score will find any tailwinds for some time.”

Release Date: 28th July 2017

Next Release Date: 31st August 2017

Source: GfK

UK Retail Sales

Retail Sales

Month on Month Value Change: +0.4%
Month on Month Volume Change: +0.6%

  • In the 3 months to June 2017, the quantity bought (volume) in the retail industry is estimated to have increased by 1.5%, with increases seen across all store types.
  • The growth for Quarter 2 (Apr to June) 2017 follows a decline of 1.4% in Quarter 1 (Jan Mar) 2017, meaning we are broadly at the same level as at the start of 2017.
  • Compared with May 2017, the quantity bought increased by 0.6%, with non-food stores providing the main contribution.
  • Feedback from retailers suggests that warmer weather in addition to the introduction of summer clothing helped boost clothing sales.
  • Average store prices (including petrol stations) increased by 2.7% on the year following a rise of 3.2% in May 2017; the fall is a consequence of slowing fuel prices.
  • Online sales (excluding automotive fuel) increased year-on-year by 15.9% and by 1.8% on the month, accounting for approximately 16.2% of all retail spending.

Period: June 2017

Released: 20th July 2017
Next Release Date: 17th August 2017

A first estimate of retail sales in volume and value terms, seasonally and non-seasonally adjusted.

Source: Office for National Statistics


UK Consumer Price Index (CPI)

CPIH image

Percentage Monthly Change (to June 2017): +2.6% 

Previous Monthly Percentage Annual Change (to May 2017): +2.7%

Percentage 12 Month Change: +2.6%
Previous 12 Month Percentage Change: +2.9%
Monthly Index: 103.3
Previous Monthly Index: 103.3 (2015 = 100)

Period: June 2017

  • The Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH, not a National Statistic) 12-month inflation rate was 2.6% in June 2017, down from 2.7% in May 2017.
  • This is the first fall in the CPIH inflation rate since April 2016, although it remains higher than in recent years.
  • Falling prices for motor fuels and certain recreational and cultural goods and services were the main contributors to the fall in the rate.
  • These downward contributions were partially offset by rising prices for furniture and furnishings.
  • The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) 12-month rate was 2.6% in June 2017, down from 2.9% in May 2017.

Release Date: 18th July 2017
Next Release: 15th August 2017

Price indices, percentage changes and weights for the different measures of consumer price inflation. 

Source: Office for National Statistics

UK Producer Price Inflation (PPI)

Producer Price Index

Main points

  • The annual rate of inflation for goods leaving the factory gate slowed for the second time this year in June and follows a steep decline in input price inflation since January 2017.
  • Factory gate prices (output prices) rose 3.3% on the year to June 2017 from 3.6% in May 2017, which is the slowest rate prices have increased since December 2016.
  • Input prices rose 9.9% on the year to June 2017 from 12.1% in May 2017, meaning the annual rate has fallen 10 percentage points since January 2017.
  • Inputs of crude oil is the main driver of the recent slowing of input price inflation as annual price growth for crude oil fell from 88.9% in February 2017 to 9.1% in June 2017.
  • Core output inflation rose 2.9% on the year to June 2017 from 2.8% in May 2017 and is now the largest contributor to the annual rate of inflation for goods leaving the factory gate.

Period: June 2017 

Changes in the prices of goods bought and sold by UK manufacturers including price indices of materials and fuels purchased (input prices) and factory gate prices (output prices).

Release Date: 16th July 2017
Next Release: 15th August 2017

Source: Office for National Statistics

Nationwide House Price Index

House Prices

Monthly Index: 417.5 - June 2017
Previous Monthly Index: 412.8 - May 2017

Monthly Change: +1.1%
Previous Monthly Change: -0.2%

Annual Change: +3.1%
Previous Annual Change: +2.1%

Average UK House Price: £211,301
Previous Month Average House Price: £208,711

Period: June 2017

Release Date: 3rd July 2017
Next Release Date: 4th August 2017

Nationwide are the world's largest building society and one of the UK's largest mortgage providers. They have the longest unbroken run of house price data, stretching back to 1952 on a quarterly basis and 1991 on a monthly basis. Here you can access their monthly and quarterly house price reports, special features and download data series. 

Source: Nationwide House Price Index

UK Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

Gross Domestic Product

GDP volume: +0.2% - Quarter 1 (January to March) 2017 - compared with growth of +0.7% in Quarter 4 (October to December) 2016.

Period: Q1 2017 – Second estimate of GDP

UK GDP growth in Quarter 1 2017 has been revised down by 0.1 percentage points from the preliminary estimate published on 28 April 2017; mainly due to broad-based downward revisions within the services sector.

Release Date: 30th June 2017
Next Release Date: 26th July 2017

Preliminary, second and final estimates of GDP released over a quarter as more data becomes available. The final estimate is published in the Quarterly National Accounts. GDP is the main measure of UK economic growth based on the value of goods and services produced during a given period.

Source: Office for National Statistics

Bank of England Base Rate

Bank of England

Current Bank Rate: 0.25%
Previous Month’s Bank Rate: 0.25%

Release Date: 3rd July 2017
Next Release Date: 3rd August 2017

Source: Bank of England

NHBC - New Build Statistics/New Registrations

NHBC flag

Total Registrations (Rolling Qtr March to May 2017): 44,963
Total Registrations (Rolling Q1 March to May 2016): 40,641
Percentage Change: +11%.

Private Sector Registrations (Rolling Qtr March to May 2017): 32,561
Private Sector Registrations (Rolling Qtr March to May 2016): 31,215
Percentage change: +4%

Public and Affordable Sector Registrations (Rolling Qtr March to May 2017): 12,402
Public and Affordable Sector Registrations (Rolling Qtr March to May 2016): 9,426
Percentage change: +32%

The continued upturn in affordable sector registrations can be attributed to a number of larger Housing Associations developing homes for market rent, private sale and shared ownership along with an increase in joint ventures with the private sector.

Over the rolling quarter nine of the 12 UK regions experienced growth, with West Midlands (+56%), Yorkshire & Humberside (+34%) and the North West (+26%) among the fastest growing areas, when compared to the same time last year.

As the leading warranty and insurance provider for new homes in the UK, NHBC's registration statistics, representing approximately 80% of the new homes market, are a lead indicator of UK house-building activity.

Commenting on the latest figures, NHBC Business Development Director Neil Jefferson said: "It is encouraging to report another positive month of growth in the sector, with levels in May ahead of those seen this time last year. We have seen increases in the levels of new home registrations in both the private and affordable sector and in nine out of 12 UK regions."

Release Date: 5th July 2017
Next Release: August 2017

Source: NHBC

UK Construction Purchasing Managers' Index (Markit and CIPS)

Markit logo

Index: 54.8 – June 2017
Previous month: 56.0 – May 2017

Publication date: 4th July 2017
Next publication date: 4th August 2017

The Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) Construction Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI) is a diffusion index incorporating survey results provided by construction firms throughout the country. A reading above fifty suggests the construction sector is expanding, while a reading below fifty suggests the construction sector is in contraction. Policymakers and traders watch these surveys closely as purchasing managers usually have early access to data about their company’s performance, rather than waiting for the hard data to emerge.

Source: Markit Economics

UK Labour Market

Unemployment office

Unemployment rate: 4.6% (February to April 2017)
Previous annual rate: 5.1% (December 2015 – February 2016) 

  • Estimates from the Labour Force Survey show that, between November 2016 to January 2017 and February to April 2017, the number of people in work increased, the number of unemployed people fell, and the number of people aged from 16 to 64 not working and not seeking or available to work (economically inactive) also fell.

  • There were 31.95 million people in work, 109,000 more than for November 2016 to January 2017 and 372,000 more than for a year earlier.

  • The employment rate (the proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work) was 74.8%, the joint highest since comparable records began in 1971.

Period covered: February to April 2017

Publication date: 14th June 2017
Next publication date: 12th July 2017

The level and rate of UK unemployment measured by the Labour Force Survey (LFS) using a definition of unemployment specified by the International Labour Organisation. Unemployed people as those without a job who have been actively seeking work in the past 4 weeks and are available to start work in the next 2 weeks. It also includes those who are out of work but have found a job and are waiting to start it in the next 2 weeks.

Source: Office for National Statistics

UK Population Figures

UK Census

UK population: 65,648,100 (30th June 2016 estimate)
UK population: 65,110,000 (mid 2015 estimates)
Percentage change: +0.8%

Male: 32.4 million (49.3%)
Female: 33.0 million (50.7%)

Estimated population of England: 55,268,100 (84.2% of the UK’s population)
Estimated population of Scotland: 5,404,700 (8.2% of the UK’s population)
Estimated population of Wales: 3,113,200 (4.7% of the UK’s population)
Estimated population of Northern Ireland: 1,862,100 (2.8% of the UK’s population)

Mid-year population estimates relate to the usually resident population. They account for long-term international migrants (people who change their country of usual residence for a period of 12 months or more) but do not account for short-term migrants (people who come to or leave the country for a period of less than 12 months). This approach is consistent with the standard UN definition for population estimates which is based upon the concept of usual residence and includes people who reside, or intend to reside, in the country for at least twelve months, whatever their nationality.

Data last updated: 22nd June 2017

Next Update: June 2018

Source: ONS


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